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error 1203 on lexmark printer

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error 1203 on lexmark printer by pascalparent (7/4/05 7:02 PM) reply + / -
I have a lexmark P915, brand new and after 2 pictures, it says error 1203. If I consult the minimalist info in the manual, it says that I have a cartridge short circuit?


Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by panda (8/4/05 12:04 PM) reply + / -
It's mean your catridges overflow even from brand new catridges after a several prints or right after you refilled the catridges. Check to see if ink are smeared on the holder where the contact panel with the catridge. I have the same problem which I think lexmark have a proble and overlook.

I use the klennex with a few drops of water to dampen and clean off those contact on the holder and my printer work again.
The refill ink work very well if you let it sit 24 hrs. Then before you print anything, you should run aligned the catridges a couple times then run clean catridges a couple times.
Print the test page to see how it's look and way you go.
Be sure not to leave any debris of klennex on those holder contact panel.

Too bad that I also cound not find out how to reset the ink indicator. It's annoying to hit the OK button every time you want to print.

Try and see if it's work for you. Good luck......

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (8/20/06 9:27 PM) reply + / -
Didn't work.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Jucaes1 (8/23/07 5:29 PM) reply + / -
Thank You From Colombia!!! The problem is fixed!!!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (12/24/07 1:34 PM) reply + / -
Thanks! I had the same problem and it worked from just cleaning off the smeared ink.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (1/21/08 4:59 PM) reply + / -
I have a lexmark x4270 and i have the error 1203
it wont let me print anything at all
what can i do about that?

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (2/9/08 2:53 PM) reply + / -
Problem only occurred after filling with ink, problem was fixed when i soaked out some ink. put cartidge back in, error gone- filled too full of ink!!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Chief911 (3/17/08 5:50 PM) reply + / -
This error can happen if you refill your own carts. Try taking the cart that causes the error out and placing it on a water-soaked paper towel. This will 'wick' the excess ink out of the cart. See if that works.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by tna7477 (4/13/08 10:20 AM) reply + / -
I have put in ink cartridges in my printer and it wont stop saying Error #1203 Cartridge error, Consult's susers guide. I have done what book says and nothing. Is there anything else I can do? I have even gone as far as to uninstall it and reinstall it. didn't work. when I try to go through computer to try to allign or get ink installed it goes to the same message. Any ideas? It is not like I have money to go buy a new one. Oh and ink cartridges in printer are brand new and yes they are lexmark brand. Thank you for reading!

Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (6/12/08 10:40 PM) reply + / -
I have cartridgbe error an I can't seem to get to work so let me know real soon please.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by lexmark sux bit t (8/21/08 2:38 PM) reply + / -
lol please dont tell me that a high yeild official cartridge is too full!!!

Lexmark really is a C***, i so needed to print an order of service for my mates wedding this saturday and this printer is about to be thrown out my top floor window, all its good for really, never buying a lexmark again, it'll just fail when i really need it!

Cheap ass componets and the most awful driver support, cannon gets my money from now on :(

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by AcidPunk (10/7/08 4:17 AM) reply + / -
Thanks for Panda. I had fixed the problem.
It works well now. THANK YOU !!!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Lindile (1/23/09 2:23 AM) reply + / -
I cleaned everything I could on the printer but I still get the error #1203. I broke the colour cartridge hoping to see what the problem is. Can anyone advise whether buying a new one would help oy I must just throw away the whole printer. I can't even guess what an expert technician will do to fix it. Please advise and thanking you in advance. Im Lindile, Cape Town, South Africa.

Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by acidpunk (1/23/09 2:46 AM) reply + / -
Lindile, there is nothing very hard to fix.
Just do the following:
1) open the printer
2)remove the cartridge.
Now look - the problem is not in cartridge, the problem is in scheme from printer that touches the cartridge from behind.
You must clean this scheme from ink with a peace of soft paper ( use the kleanex for example ).
When you'll do this - let the scheme to dry for a while and after insert the cartridge.
Hope you'll fix the proble.
Good luck...

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Laam King Ent LLC (2/2/09 3:54 PM) reply+1 + / -
What if your cartridge is low will that cause this error? I see that my color cartridge is leaking and before I got this message it was saying the ink was low.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by ShamrockMoon (2/3/09 6:04 PM) reply + / -
Rawrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!! Ok, so could this possibly happen if one of your cartriges is out of ink??? My color cartrige is fine, and what I need to print my current document, but my black ink has like three drops left in the cartrige. I am freaking out, as I need to print NOW!!!!

Please advise! Thanks in advance!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Big al999 (2/15/09 9:36 AM) reply + / -
Thank you for the ideas. My printer now works!! I had some ink on the front contact points of the cartridge after refilling.

Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (2/19/09 12:35 PM) reply + / -
Hi ..

My name is Kevin from U.K

I have this problem about about my printer X5400 ..

I refilled my catridge with ink and then when i put in back to the printer, it says, error1203 ..

what shoul i do ?

i did soaked it in paper towel but nothing happen ..

how many minutes should i soak it ??

tanx .

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by naeem (4/12/09 5:41 AM) reply + / -
i have a lexmark 3 in 1 4500 and i am having the same problem ive cleaned the cartridges and around it but i keep getting the error

Re: Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (5/8/09 3:28 PM) reply + / -
Thanks for the help!

Your instructions really did the trick!


Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (6/22/09 7:54 AM) reply + / -
i have cleaned my printer for over 5 times. but it still doesnt work. is it possible that i overcleaned it?

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Unknow (6/27/09 12:34 AM) reply + / -
Can someone plz help me.
I have a Lexmark 5400.
I read all this things that may help me.
but nothing helped.
Its always saying Error#1203
Blah blah. you know the deal.
When i try to print it says
that its busy. Anyone?

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by austin253 (7/25/09 10:52 AM) reply + / -
this most likely means the cartridge has failed...just got his error after filling a lex 34 after reinstalling the filter screen. it worked before i did that but once i tried it after the new screen it came up with this error. time to get a new cartridge. i work at a cartridge re manufacturing company and we deal with this stuff all day.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by napertivo (7/28/09 5:58 PM) reply + / -
I just had the same error. Cleaned the cartridge and printer multiple times with no success.

Finally I replaced my color cartridge because it seemed low. That fixed it. The old one and new ones are original HP cartridges. I was thinking of refilling these for next time but I'm not sure its worth the headaches.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (11/7/09 3:48 AM) reply + / -
Very much alcohol : clean cartridge contacts and the contacts of the lexmark printer with very much alcohol . It would in my case.Thanks for atttention.

Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (12/14/09 12:07 PM) reply + / -
Lets just face it! No matter how much I clean it (error #1203) I think we all bought junk! Instead of paying a few dollars more.. We bought a Lexmark.. I'll know better next time

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (2/18/10 10:08 PM) reply + / -
I had the same problem, but when I put in new cartridges it worked just fine again. I didn't buy oem cartridges... I bought another brand called Nukote 33, which is compatible with the lexmark x5495. I bought them from Then I bought there refill kits and everything works great now! I recommend anyone who needs ink go to for your ink. They sell it all but you must email them to put your cartridge numbers in, because they get so busy selling many different types of items. So
just ask them for the kind you need and they will help you out! They ship fast too. I have been dealing with them for over 2 years and they are very dependable and reasonable on prices too. Believe owe it to your self to check them out!!! You can really save money there! Oh they also sell paper, tape and other office products so make sure you ask for what you need. Some pages are a privilege to view. Not everyone gets to see some pages...because they are special pages for return customers only. good luck all I hope you fix your problem soon.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Anonymous (3/10/10 9:09 PM) reply + / -
Thanks cleaning the cartridge did the trick!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by arkgases (3/30/10 4:27 AM) reply + / -
Never will I buy lexmark again. they make it impossible to refill cartridges without voiding warrantee. I now have to spend $80 for new cartridges - forget it... for an extra $40 I can buy a brand new canon. I hope lexmark reads these posts - they will realise that we consumers aren't the idiots they assumed we were

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by sarar (9/18/10 4:22 PM) reply + / -
I have the same error too, I have installed a new catridge for my X5490 and I keep getting error 1203 50%. I have tried all the suggestions, but nothing seems to work, guess I will have to fork out for a new cartridge?

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by printmaster098 (9/20/10 1:51 PM) reply + / -
The error can be caused by either a communication failure between one of the cartridges and the printer or by a short in one of the cartridges. Do the clean cartridge function in Maintenance from the settings menu on the printer's operator panel.Check which cartridge is causing the problem by inserting one cartridge in the printer only, then close the cover. If no error comes up, insert the other cartridge. Replace whichever cartridge causes the error. If you're using a brand new genuine Lexmark cartridge(s) yet it's showing the error, contact Lexmark technical support for assistance.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by sarar (9/20/10 2:04 PM) reply + / -
printer wont let me run the clean cartridge function as it says printer busy.

Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by printmaster098 (9/23/10 12:06 PM) reply + / -
Unplug the power adapter from the printer, replug after 30 seconds. That should give enough time for the printer to reset. The power adapter is the rectangular black box behind the printer where the power cord is attached. When the printer's ready, run the clean cartridge function again.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Moshidi (10/4/10 11:20 AM) reply + / -
Thanks guys, worked after a few tries. Focus on whiping the bottom bit, you should get some residue on your "kleenex" which means something is happening. Replace cartridges and restart your printer. Thank god I dont have to buy new ones....

Re: error on series 5400 lexmark printer by geoff. (10/10/10 3:03 AM) reply + / -

I have a Lexmark 5400 series printer and in the display window it keeps showing ALIGNMENT error and a tick either side which says print. This prints out a test page ok but the ALIGNMENT message does not disappear. I have tried everything in their troubleshooting manual without success. It won't even allow me to delete the program so I can reinstall it. The message on the computer screen keeps saying PRINTER IS BUSY. Can anyone help?

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Luvjohnluc (1/8/11 3:22 PM) reply + / -
I have a Lexmark 7170 that I keep getting an Error 1203 on. Last itme I got one I just turned it off and on and it disaapeared. This time I wiped with Kleenex(and let it dry) as suggested in previous comments and it is not working. Any other ideas??

Just pulls the paper through with nothing printed. Both color and black and white.

It's a new refilled black cartridge. I just bought it last night.

Stuck on a snowy day!!!

Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by SugarMama (2/15/11 5:06 PM) reply + / -
WORKED!!!!! Thank you!!!!! I have been struggling with this damn printer for 2 days!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by fixitt (4/14/11 4:43 PM) reply + / -
This is about the "alignment" error message. This one is easy. When this error message comes up, just press "Cancel" and you are good to go. I actually got this tip from a Lexmark customer service nice guy. Wish all issues were so easy.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by PoppedPimple (4/22/11 5:19 AM) reply + / -
error #1203
isolated it to B&W cartridge
wiping bottom changed message to "left cartridge missing"
looked at bottom with magnifier
discoverd popped blister on copper colored surface
(very small, about 1/32nd inch diameter)
probably interrupting circuitry...?

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by LexmarkListens (4/22/11 8:14 AM) reply + / -
The 1203 error message is caused by a problem with one of your cartridges. Please refer to this article in the Lexmark website about Troubleshooting a 1203 Error Message on the Lexmark X5400 Series at

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by nokuphila (10/12/11 5:24 AM) reply + / -
help with error 1203!it jus doesnt work,i have cleaned it

Re: Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by LexmarkListens (10/21/11 1:46 PM) reply + / -
The 1203 error indicates that there is a problem with your cartridge(s). Please follow the steps below to identify and fix the problem:

1. Make sure the printer is on.
2. Open the printer cover. The print cartridge carrier moves and stops at the loading position, unless the All-in-One is busy.
Note: If the carrier does not automatically move to the center, turn off the printer/unplug the printer from the power source and then slide the carrier to the center.
3. Remove both cartridges from the carrier.
4. Close the printer cover.
5. Re-brick your printer. Pull out the power supply, black box where the power cord is plugged in at the back of the printer, and put it back after 30 seconds.
6. When the printer turns on, reinsert one cartridge first.
7. Close the printer cover and check for any errors.
8. If no error appears, reinsert the other cartridge. Close the printer cover.
9. Replace whichever cartridge is causing the error to appear with a new cartridge

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by meshwitme (11/7/11 3:15 PM) reply + / -
i have a x7170, i never use my color cartridge, its empty now but who knows when the last time was I replaced it. First I tried cleaning the cartridges as suggested above to no avail. The only thing that seemed to work for me was to remove the color cartridge, after removing it the printer complained about not having the color cartridge installed but ran like a champ when I printed black, which I'm cool with as i never use color.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by nwboldan (2/21/12 11:04 AM) reply + / -
had to change printer cartridge in the end but all working fine now thank you

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by aru (5/14/12 11:42 AM) reply + / -
cleaned the contacts on the refill cartridge and the printer it works! Thanks!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by MichaelRich (5/17/12 11:37 AM) reply + / -
I was going frantic over this error, I thought it was with my Color Cartridge, since it was reciently replaced,but I did what someone said here and took out the black cartridge and it cleared the error, < wa LAH IT was a problem with the Black one witch had lots of ink in still and i was using> I tried still to clean the black one and the wall on the printer both sides were clean, both cartridge fronts were clean, but unnderneeth the ink would come out, Both were True Lexmark Cartridges, When I put the Black back in, I got the error < Left Cartridge is Incorrect> Aparently an error Lexmark tries to use to keep you from using Non Lexmark cartridges, I tried several things to no avail, i got back to the 1203 error, then back to LCI error.

I replaced the black with a New Cartridge, and all was fixed....

Just glad i didn't need a new printer,. And guess the cartridge just failed,...

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Bad Printer!!! (5/21/12 1:09 PM) reply + / -
OK I just did EVERYTHING - still reading 1203 error BUT!!!

Problem solved here

Resetting the Printer: Method 2 THIS WORKED !!! YEA!!!

You can also reset your printer to the original settings without using the printer menus.

Press Start Color (green button) + X and keep the buttons pressed down.
Press once to power the All-In-One on. WARNING! Do not release the buttons for the next ten seconds.
Follow the prompts on the display to choose your language, country or region code, date, time, and fax number.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Peter Holwell (8/9/12 5:16 AM) reply + / -
I had this error and searched the Internet for a solution.

DO NOT TRY TO USE or similar. It looks like a scam which could destroy your hard drive.

Follow the Lexmark advice. I did. A fairly new Lexmark black cartridge, 34XL proved to be the problem. Changed it and Error no more!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by X5495 (8/25/12 10:28 AM) reply + / -
Follwed instruturions printer will not print, Error msg appear each time I retry.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Baljeet (9/11/12 12:59 PM) reply + / -
just wash it with a hose pipe

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by Patti50 (11/6/12 4:52 PM) reply + / -
Hi I have A lexmark 3500 4500 all in one printer...I keep getting an error message saying I am out of ink..It is not a Lexmark cartridge..I took it back to where I bought it they checked it and said there is ink in it...When I get the message saying out of ink wants me to order..but there is no cancel button..etc. and then it goes to a screen saying checking for solutins but none come up...grrrrr ..Help!!! Thanks

Error 1203 on lexmark printer by Canadian2299 (11/27/12 5:01 AM) reply + / -
Just took the advice mentioned below to properly cleaned both the cartridge and the cartridge "cleaners" and the sponge and pretty much everything that the ink cartridges touch. Now everything works great again. My Lexmark x7170 has run great now for close to 10 years with very minimal maintenance. I would strongly suggest to all to properly clean your printer at least yearly.

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by kgcrafts (3/4/13 11:46 AM) reply + / -
Followed one of the instructions in the discussion thread. I was to the step to turn the printer on. I had replaced one of the ink cartridges (color) and when I went to turn the printer (Lexmark x8350) on.....nothing.

I cannot get the printer to turn on again. I pulled the power plug a couple more times, but nothing.

Does anyone have a suggestion on how to not only get the printer to turn on, but to resolve the 1203 error I was getting.

Thank you

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by juliarea (3/17/13 2:09 PM) reply + / -
Lexmark is a piece of junk. iNSISTS on printing an alignment page that wastes ink so have to cancel. Won't run without both cartridges, 1203 error message and cartridge is leaking and ink is everywhere. Won't use anything except Lexmark cartridges. Yes, I know everyone uses them but this printer won't use anything except Lexmark Cartridges. Last 5 cartridges purchased NEW two were inoperable and had to be returned to store. They didn't blink, knew these cartridges were faulty. Tried the cartridge shop and they were aware Lexmark was picky on generic brands. Also teried Walgreens refill and the unit wouldn't work with either one of them. Built in proprietary junk! I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER LEXMARK, ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY WORTHLESS printer thaqt uses tons and I mean tons of expensive ink. Cartridges last no time at all. Worthless junk!!!!!

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by khi627 (5/25/13 5:19 AM) reply + / -
First refilled black ink cartridge i bought for my lexmark did not work. First refilled ink color cartridge worked just fine. Second refilled black ink cartridge worked just fine. Third black refilled ink cartridge won't work. Not sure just yet, but it seems the black ink is pickier side than the color ink side. Anyone else? is everyone having trouble with just the black side? Cuz i am thinking i/we all could buy color refills and buy genuine lexmark black cartridges. Atleast we would all be saving on the color cartridges. :/

Re: error 1203 on dell all in one printer by aviana1948 (10/1/13 5:52 PM) reply + / -
nothing working....can get out of 1203 error

Re: error 1203 on lexmark printer by AL-S (10/5/14 10:29 AM) reply + / -
I desire to get rid of error code 1203!

I only use Lexmark 4270 to send faxes - I have no intention of buying $86.00 replacement ink cartridges - why to I need cartridges just to fax?
I DON T print anything any longer

I've been faxing for years with no problem till now - please help before I send this unit out the window.................................................... thanks

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